The lead-up up to President Obama’s announcement that he would implement the DREAM Act amnesty, even though it had been repeatedly rejected by Congress, was accompanied by an elaborate and well-orchestrated public relations effort, which included featuring the “best and the brightest” young illegal aliens on the cover of Time magazine. The post-announcement PR effort continues with the release of polling data carefully worded to elicit positive responses for the president’s policy.
The most obvious example is a Bloomberg released a poll today that found that 64 percent of likely voters support Obama’s announcement that his administration is going to implement the provisions of the DREAM Act without it actually having passed Congress. Even more reassuring for fans of the DREAM Act and/or an Imperial Presidency, independent voters favor Obama’s move 2 to 1. This is a curious finding, since voters opposed the DREAM Act the last time when it was in front of Congress.
The problem with these polls is that they can based on hypotheticals, leading questions, or false premises, or rely on skewed samples. For example, Bloomberg asked respondents if they supported halting the deportation of “some illegal immigrants” including those who “have been honorably discharged from the military.” Since those who are not in the country legally are barred from enlisting in the military, this is a red herring, but it does elicit a response favorable to Obama.
The DREAM Act was specifically designed to play off the sympathies of U.S. voters in order to push through a broad amnesty for millions of illegal aliens without having to secure the border or curtail legal immigration or guest worker programs. Polling on the issue has reflected those sympathies. The problem for DREAM Act advocates is that when concrete proposals are put forward and subjected to public scrutiny, the American people realize how terrible the legislation is and reject its passage. It if were as popular, as Bloomberg suggest, the DREAM Act would have passed years ago.
What the Obama administration did on Friday was to implement a terrible policy. But that is not the worst part. By declaring the DREAM Act the law of the land despite its rejection on several occasions by Congress, Obama demonstrated profound contempt for constitutional government and for the American people. Curiously, Bloomberg neglected to add that part to its poll question.